At peak condition during summer, the kikuyu grass is a perennial type of plant that survives all throughout the year. It creeps across any land area and often becoming a headache to lawn gardeners. Such a downside can still be overlooked as this grass is known to be a staple for some farm animals. This grass can adapt to a wide range of soil types and can survive extreme weather conditions. It can regenerate at a fast speed making it look lush even after a frost. It is a great plant for erosion control and can help in holding water for harvest.
Raising Kikuyu grass
Planting kikuyu grass isn’t much of a challenge. Even on slopes and rocky areas where machineries would have a hard time, the grass can be established without much difficulty. It can be done by vegetative material like the stolons or rhizomes of the plant or through seeding. Below are vegetative planting methods that can be done with this grass.
Spot planting is one vegetative planting method that can be done. This can be used in areas where the slope is really steep or there are too much stone that using machineries is impossible. This method has proven to be successful under such conditions. In this method, you need to clear the area by spraying herbicide and then burning after the process or simply burn it.
Disc, one that is off-set can be used in removing the plant material needed for planting the grass. It is also used in incorporating the materials into the area where you want it planted. It should be set to cut a depth of 10 – 15 cm as you disc out the sods. You then pick it up and on an even manner, spread out to the area. The area will be disced lightly to a depth of 10 – 115 cm twice before the rolling takes place.
Plough with a single to three furrow mouldboard is commonly used to make furrows for the planting materials. The width should be about 90 cm. The materials are then placed within the row to the height of 5 cm of the leaf from ground level. Use the tractor wheel to roll through the area after you have planted the last of the materials.
Rotovator or rotary plough can be used to lift out and plant the grass. In using this machine, the rear flap is lifted as you lift the planting material then closing the flap while you put the material into the soil. The speed you set on your tractor is important. It should be set to about the speed of a walking person. The recommended depth to be set in this machine should be 6 – 10 cm. It is important that you keep an eye to the depth by which the materials are being planted. This is key to a successful planting of the grass.
After planting the kikuyu grass
Once you have finished planting the kikuyu grass onto your field, it is advisable that you put on extra amount of fertilizer that contains phosphorous. This will encourage the roots, rhizomes or stolons of the plant to grow away from the plant. This will encourage spreading of the grass.